New Book Captures Hoosierness in 142 Captivating (and Quirky) Images

Somehow, they pulled it off—gathered hundreds of photographs, taken on the same day all across Indiana earlier this year, and selected the ones that, together, create a vivid and authentic portrait of the state, it’s people, places, institutions, and experiences. The result is One Day in May: 24 Hours in the Life of Indiana, a compact yet lovely (and obsessively flippable) paperback released today by Quarry Books, an imprint of Indiana University Press.

The images, which span from 2:44 a.m. to 11:39 p.m. on May 20, depict scenes both sweeping and intimate, iconic and idiosyncratic, in cities, towns, and countryside. “It was a normal spring day in the Hoosier State, paradoxically full of the mundane and mighty, surprise and same-old, all wrapped in routine,” notes the preface to the book, which was edited by Gary Dunham. “But it was not an entirely typical day. On May 20, 2016, in Indiana’s two-hundredth year, Hoosiers chose to share their Friday together with the future. Hundreds across the state—and we mean everywhere—took photos that symbolized something meaningful about those twenty-four hours and sent them to us at Indiana University Press.”

A few of those photos appear here.

Photos and cover image courtesy Indiana University Press


Since first joining Indianapolis Monthly in 2000, West has written about a wide range of subjects including crime, history, arts and entertainment, pop culture, politics, and food. His feature stories have twice been noted in the Best American Sports Writing anthology and have received top honors from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. “The Collapse,” West’s account of the 2011 Indiana State Fair tragedy, was a 2013 National City and Regional Magazine Awards finalist in the category of Best Reporting. He lives on the near-east side.